Become an Osprey Watcher: Connect with a global community of observers


The Center for Conservation Biology has launched Osprey-Watch, a project created to engage a global community to collect data on breeding osprey.  Linked by an interest in osprey and a concern for the health of the aquatic environments on which they rely, this community will for the first time provide a global perspective on this charismatic species.  The mission of Osprey-Watch is to bring citizen scientists together in order to collect information  on a large enough spatial scale to be useful in addressing three of the most pressing issues facing aquatic ecosystems including global climate change, depletion of fish stocks, and environmental contaminants. 


Osprey are one of very few truly global sentinels for aquatic health.  They feed almost exclusively on live fish throughout their entire life cycle.  They are a top consumer within aquatic ecosystems and are very sensitive to both overfishing and environmental contaminants.  Nearly all populations breed in the northern latitudes and winter in the southern latitudes, effectively linking the aquatic health of the hemispheres.  Their breeding season in the north is highly seasonal making them an effective barometer of climate change.


Osprey-Watch is a user-friendly, internet platform that allows observers across the globe to map their nests, log observations, upload photos, and interact within an observer forum.  Information entered into the platform will be immediately accessible to users and will be summarized following the breeding season. 


To join a growing community of global citizens, please visit and become an Osprey-Watcher.



Michael Wilson

Center for Conservation Biology

College of William and Mary & Virginia Commonwealth University

P.O. Box 8795

Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795

phone: 757-221-1649

fax: 757-221-1650

email: [log in to unmask]


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